We may not even be a fifth of the season in, but there are some patterns emerging already. The Premier League may be the most unpredictable league in the world, but there are some prophecies that can be made based on what we have seen so far.
The race for the Premier League Golden Boot is always intriguing, and there are times when it goes right down the the wire. On other occasions, like last season when Luis Suarez was the runaway winner, players top the standings almost from start to finish.
This season, there are several worthy contenders for the award. Here are the top 5:
1) Diego Costa (Chelsea)
The impact that Diego Costa has had on Chelsea Football Club since his move from Atletico Madrid in the summer has been absolutely incredible. The Spaniard has already netted 9 times in his 7 appearances for the Blues, equalling the tally of their top-scoring striker from last season, Samuel Eto’o, who managed 9 in the whole of the last campaign.
Costa has scored in every home game so far for Chelsea and has already forged a deadly partnership with another of the big summer signings, Cesc Fabregas. He is showing no signs of stopping and has already established himself as a firm favourite among the Chelsea faithful. If he can remain injury-free throughout the season and maintain his consistency, he will be well on his way to becoming the first foreign player to win the Premier League Golden Boot outright in his first season in England.
2) Sergio Aguero (Manchester City)
The player with the best ever minutes-per-goals ratio in the history of the Premier League, it is incredibly surprising that Sergio Aguero is still to win the Premier League Golden Boot in his career. A major reason for that is the injury problems that the Argentine has faced over the past few years.
Aguero is one of the best finishers in the top-flight and already has 5 goals to his name this season. He is set to be a pivotal part of Manchester City’s title defence and like Costa, if he too can maintain his fitness, we could be set for a blockbuster of a contest to see who finishes top-scorer.
3) Radamel Falcao (Manchester United)
The Colombian forward may not be too high on many people’s list when it comes to winning the Premier League Golden Boot, but he is as much of a serial goalscorer as anyone. A great poacher and finisher, Falcao ended the long wait for his first goal for Manchester United last week by scoring the winner against Everton. He has faced injury problems recently, only recovering from an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) problem before the start of this campaign. But there is no doubt that once he start firing, he will give Aguero and Costa one hell of a fight. Despite their frailties at the back, the Red Devils’ attacking play has been mesmerising at times and Falcao will only benefit from having the likes of Robin Van Persie, Angel Di Maria and Juan Mata around him to supply the goods.
4) Graziano Pelle (Southampton)
A big outsider when it comes to this award, but Graziano Pelle’s incredible scoring record in recent seasons cannot be overlooked. He netted 50 goals in 57 appearances in two seasons with Feyenoord and is up and running in full-flow with his new side Southampton as well, scoring 4 times already in 6 league appearances. His record over the last couple of seasons is bettered only by Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Pelle will want to prove his doubters wrong by showing that he can deliver, not just in a relatively lesser competitive league like the Eridivisie, but in England’s top-flight as well.
5) Daniel Sturridge (Liverpool)
Despite Luis Suarez’s heroics last season, no one can belittle Daniel Sturridge’s contributions to the side that came agonisingly close to winning the Premier League. Sturridge is arguably England’s best goalscoring option at the international level at the moment. At Liverpool, despite the arrival of Mario Balotelli from AC Milan, Sturridge is still very much Brendan Rodger’s main man. The Reds’ patchy form in the striker’s absence was no coincidence whatsoever, as they struggled to penetrate and break teams down.
Since his move to Anfield from Chelsea in 2012, Sturridge has an incredible scoring record, netting 32 times in 46 league appearances. Once he gets back to fitness and finds his rhythm, he will be right up there in the race for the Premier League Golden Boot.